For your next woodworking project, you decided to purchase a new power tool. However, you are in a dilemma, as you have to choose between the miter saw and circular saw. Each of these power tools has specific use cases and distinct set of advantages and disadvantages.
Miter saw is a power tool you can use to execute accurate miter cuts and cross cuts at various angles. There is also the option to make compound and bevel cuts in your DIY woodworking project. This power tool is similar to the circular saw, due to the shape of the blades.
Professionals use this power tool, because of its accuracy. The diameter of the spinning blade can reach up to a maximum of 12 inches. You can think of this instrument as a circular saw on a vertical pivoting arm.
Where does the miter saw excel?
· Best for tight-fitting joints – If your project involves making trims for windows or doors and baseboards, there isn’t any tool that can match miter saw’s performance. The fit of the workpiece will be perfect, providing high-quality results.
· High accuracy cuts – Regardless of which type of cut you want to use, you don’t have to worry about the quality of the results. The miter saw gives you the ability to adjust the blade’s angle, to ensure the incisions follow your measurements.
· Reduces cutting time – The miter saw is excellent for improving productivity, as it allows you to make extensive cuts. As you get to go through substantial quantities of material quickly, the time taken to cut large wooden boards reduces significantly.
What are the shortcomings of the miter saw?
· Higher cost – If you compare the miter saw with the circular variant, the former tends to be more expensive on average.
· Poor versatility – As you already know, there are four cuts where the miter saw provides excellent results. However, there are significant limitations, as you won’t be able to use this power tool for making other types of cuts.
· Reduced portability – Another drawback of the miter saw is when it comes to portability. As this is a stationary power tool, it takes time to move this instrument from one location to another. To store the miter saw, you need an exclusive stand or table.
A circular saw is a power tool, with a vertical, spinning blade. Versatility and low initial cost are primary reasons for the popularity of these instruments. If you go to any garage or workshop in your area, you will come across this power tool.
An effective handheld instrument in cutting through wood, its high-speed blade can go through different types of materials.
Where does the circular saw excel?
· Excellent versatility – The circular saw is quite diverse as you can use this instrument to make a wide variety of cuts. It isn’t necessary to only use this power tool for wood workpieces. If you have the right type of blade, you can cut through through metal. Due to this reason, you can use it in different projects.
· High-quality straight cuts – The majority of the woodworking activities involve making straight cuts. In these types of use cases, the circular saw provides incredible results. At the same time, you can also use this power tool for making long cuts with the wood grain.
· Low cost – The low entry cost is another factor why woodworking enthusiasts and professionals go for circular saws. Even if you are picking up the budget models, these power tools provide excellent value for money. Think about it, you only need one circular saw in your workshop, as you can use this instrument to make different cuts on a variety of materials.
What are the shortcomings of the circular saw?
· Inaccurate angles and curve cuts – If you need to make angles or curved cuts on the workpiece, you shouldn’t rely on the circular saw. Even though these are simple incisions, the prep time for executing this operation is significant. You have to get a jig and make accurate measurements. On top of that, the design and shape of the blade can make it challenging to execute specific types of curved cuts.
· Low-quality cuts – When you use a circular saw and look at the edges of the workpiece, you will notice splinters or tears. The shape of the cutting blade is the reason for the rough edges on the incision.
When should you use a miter saw?
You should think of the miter saw as a specialized tool, as you can’t use it for a wide variety of cuts. Due to this reason, go for the miter saw when you have woodworking projects which involve making compound, bevel, and miter cuts. Keep in mind that this power tool won’t be able to make extended rip cuts or go through plywood.
Woodworking projects which have extensive trim work, such as decks, small tables, furniture, and photo frames, will benefit from the miter saw. When you use this power tool in these circumstances, the time taken to complete your work goes down.
When should you use a circular saw?
If you have any woodworking project involving making different types of cuts, using the circular saw will be a game-changer. When it comes to versatility, the miter saw can’t match the flexibility of this power tool.
For straight rip-cuts, the circular saw is the best instrument, as you can get a perfect incision. If your projects involve maintaining all the wood-based items in your property, along with general cutting operations, this is the right power tool.
Which one should you choose?
Before you purchase one of these power tools, you should understand what kind of projects you will be handling in the future. If it involves DIY work for your household, the circular saw makes perfect sense. For the money you invest, you will be able to perform different types of cuts. The versatility along with the capability to cut materials other than wood is a bonus.
Getting a miter saw only makes sense when you have projects which require miter cuts. Otherwise, you won’t be using this tool, which is a waste of storage space and money.
If you are starting and don’t have a circular saw in your toolkit, you must purchase one as soon as possible. You can use this power tool for a variety of projects. As you become comfortable with the circular saw, you can get a miter saw to improve the results of your woodworking projects.
Recommended Miter Saw
The DEWALT DW715 is the best miter saw you can get in its price range. It comes with a powerful 15 amp motor, producing a maximum of 4,000 rpm. As a result, you can finish your woodworking projects at a faster rate. DEWALT focused on making this power tool portable.
You can carry it around your workspace with the built-in handle, without any hassles. The included 12-inch carbide blade is quite effective in cutting wood.
This power tool comes with 11 positive stops with a crosscut capacity of 2”x8”. Whether you are a beginner or a professional, you will find it easy to use this tool.
It comes with a blade guard, to prevent you from suffering from an injury. As you start to lower the blade on this power tool, the guard will move out of the way. On top of that, the motor doesn’t produce a lot of noise during operation.
Recommended circular saw
If you are a beginner or don’t have storage space for large power tools, you should get the Rockwell RK3440K. This instrument comes with a laser guide as the cutting line, to ensure your cuts are accurate. After spending some time with this circular saw, you will understand why this is a popular pick among woodworking enthusiasts.
Rockwell focused on making the balancing out the design and weight balance of this power tool, to bring down fatigue during extended use. You can change the position of the metal guide, making it easy and safe to perform plunge cuts. The 120-inch power cord means that you won’t have to rely on an extension cord.
If you want to learn more about various variants of saws and projects suitable for these power tools, head to this website. Here, you will get all the information you need about woodworking. It comes with an extensive collection of wood plans with detailed instructions in every step.
Coupled with advanced woodworking techniques, every project will give you excellent results. Step up your DIY game and become a skilled craftsman in your favorite hobby.
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